Corporate Strategy 2023-2028
The Corporate Strategy will only be effective if it reflects Cabinet’s priorities in a coherent manner, and if organisational strategic objectives are embedded in what teams across the Council do on a day-to-day basis. This alignment between hierarchical plans and delivery across all levels of the organisation is generally known as the ‘golden thread’ and is described in more detail through our performance management framework.
At a broader level, the Council is involved in a wide range of regional planning arrangements covering several policy themes or priorities. These are becoming more common as collaboration and partnership working become more important.
Our Corporate Strategy needs to reflect both of these elements.
Performance Management Framework
The Council’s Performance Management Framework is currently being reviewed, however the broad architecture of key strategies and plans, and monitoring and reporting arrangements, are outlined below.
Pembrokeshire Public Service Board Well-being Plan 2023 – 2028. This Plan is based around four well-being objectives setting out how partners from key organisations in Pembrokeshire across the public, private and third sector will improve well-being in the County by working collaboratively through what is known as the Public Services Board (PSB). The Council is a statutory partner of the PSB. The Well-being Plan is currently going through the final stages of approval and is expected to be published in May 2023. Our Corporate Strategy must take account of the PSB’s four well-being objectives set out in its Well-being Plan.
Programme for Administration 2022 – 2027. This document provides the political direction for the Council until the next set of elections in May 2027. It was agreed at Cabinet in January 2023.
Corporate Strategy 2023 – 2028 (this document). Through the well-being objectives set out in the Strategy or within specific sections this will establish links to other key medium-term plans – such as the Medium Term Financial Plan (agreed as part of the budget), as well as emerging plans such as the Council’s Workforce Plan, Asset Management Plan, and Procurement Strategy.
Medium Term Service Plans (4 year period, reviewed annually). These are produced by individual services and designed to drive improvement and to plan and prepare for future scenarios in line with the priorities in this Strategy. Plans are not routinely published but may be scrutinised by an appropriate Overview and Scrutiny Committee. Plans are signed off by the Senior Leadership Team and are monitored. MTSPs link to the budget planning process and are integral to identifying how Council’s priorities can be met whilst balancing the budget over the medium term.
Unit Plans (where produced). Unit or team plans may be produced to support Medium Term Service Plans, particularly for Heads of Services with wide service areas.
Individual performance and wellbeing plans (annual, reviewed frequently). This is the mechanism for individual performance appraisal. All employees are required to undertake appraisals, including senior officers.
Corporate Scorecard. This is a range of performance measures, agreed by Cabinet and the Senior Leadership Team, and designed to provide a broad understanding of organisational health. These are monitored quarterly by Cabinet and the Senior Leadership Team, and by Corporate Overview and Scrutiny Committee on a periodic basis.
Annual self-assessment. Under the Local Government and Elections (Wales) Act 2021, the Council has a duty to report annually on performance through a process of self-assessment. In effect, this means reporting on what has been delivered over the previous 12 months (both for well-being objectives and governance) and identifying improvement actions for the following year. The first self-assessment was agreed at December 2022 Council. Subsequent self-assessments must report back on the improvement actions identified in the previous year. We have developed three well-being objectives to incorporate these improvement actions into this Strategy in order to maintain corporate visibility and to simplify monitoring. The self-assessment is linked to the Annual Governance Statement (see below)
Panel Performance Assessment. Also a requirement under the Local Government and Elections Act, the Council is required to appoint an external panel of peers to review the extent to which the Council is meeting its performance duties once each electoral cycle. It is anticipated that it will take place toward the mid-late stage of the political term.
Overview and Scrutiny Committees. The Council’s five Overview and Scrutiny Committees have within their remits a role in overseeing relevant plans, strategies and performance reporting / monitoring.
Annual Governance Statement. The Council has responsibility for conducting a review of the effectiveness of its governance framework, including the system of internal control, on an annual basis. The outcome of the review is an Annual Governance Statement reported to the Governance and Audit Committee for review, and to full Council for approval.
The wider planning context- regional and collaborative working
Our Corporate Strategy sits within the context of a broader set of plans that are particularly relevant for place shaping, and policy areas such as economic development, transport and land use where we need to collaborate with other local authorities. The South West Wales area is the default footprint for achieving this. The Wales-wide plan Future Wales – the National Plan 2040 (opens in a new tab) (which is at the top of the hierarchy of plans used for land-use planning) contains a regional strategic diagram that sets out the key opportunities for the South West Wales region.
The South West Wales Corporate Joint Committee (SWWCJC) exists to simplify and improve regional planning and collaboration across Pembrokeshire, Carmarthenshire, Neath Port Talbot and Swansea. Pembrokeshire County Council forms part of its membership. It has recently agreed its Corporate Plan (opens in a new tab).
- South West Wales Economic Delivery Plan (opens in a new tab) (September 2021)
- South West Wales Energy Strategy (opens in a new tab) (March 2022)
The SWWCJC will produce a Regional Transport Plan for South West Wales that is founded on collaboration and enables the delivery of a transport system which is good for our future generations of people and communities, good for our environment and good for our economy and places. This plan replaces local transport plans. Once agreed, the regional plan will be reviewed on an annual basis with a more fundamental review around 2028.
The SWWCJC will also produce a sound, deliverable, co-ordinated and locally distinctive Strategic Development Plan for South West Wales, which is founded on stakeholder engagement and collaboration and which clearly sets out the scale and location of future growth for our future generations. Once agreed, this plan will sit between Wales-wide national planning frameworks and County Council/National Park Local Development Plans. Its approval process will mirror that of Local Development Plans and it is anticipated that it will be adopted by 2030.
As well as the SWWCJC, other regional bodies influence how we collaborate with neighbouring authorities. These bodies can use slightly different regional footprints.
Covering the same geographic area as Hywel Dda University Health Board, the West Wales Care Partnership (opens in a new tab) oversees the continued integration of health and social care. Its Population Needs Assessment (opens in a new tab) is part of the evidence base for this plan. Its West Wales Market Stability report underpins our actions to strengthen the independent care sector.
Covering Pembrokeshire, Carmarthenshire and Swansea, Partneriaeth (opens in a new tab) strives to deliver a consistent school improvement service, focused on challenge and support strategies that improve teaching and learning. It is key to meeting the central challenge of our Education well-being objective designed to improve the provision of education and learning as well as maintaining the improvements that have already been made.